An unfair dismissal solicitor deals with compensation claims for wrongful termination of employment in the UK. An unfair dismissal occurs when the termination of employment is unlawful and unreasonable which can be difficult in some circumstances to determine. Our initial advice is free and without any further obligation whatsoever. If you want to receive free legal advice on a potential unfair dismissal compensation claim just call the helpline or complete the contact form or email our offices.
In all cases involving termination of employment an employer is required to be fair and reasonable which usually includes issuing warnings about unacceptable behaviour if he is to avoid legal action before the Employment Tribunal. Prior to termination of employment an employer is required to investigate the circumstances thoroughly and be able to justify his actions and if he fails to do so a claim for compensation can be made to the Employment Tribunal.
To claim compensation the employment must normally have been for one year or more. To justify termination of employment an employer must prove that it was for one of five permitted reasons which are :-
Compensation awards for unfair dismissal take two forms :-
Basic Awards for unfair dismissal are based on age and employment length in the business, (although there is a proposal to eliminate the consideration of age).
Compensatory Awards have financial statutory caps and include loss of benefits and/or personal expenses etc.
There are many situations where termination of employment by an employer may amount to an unfair dismissal including:
Discrimination or harassment based on race, sex, religion, age or disability.
Refusal to allow maternity or paternity leave.
Employee refusing to work in excess of 48 hours each week.
Employee suffering from a medical condition that does not affect their work
Membership of a Trade Union or refusing to join a Trade Union.
Certain defined matters relating to strikes and industrial action.
There are many situations where an employer may dismiss an employee lawfully that would not give rise to an unfair dismissal compensation claim which may include:
Unacceptable conduct including unauthorised absence from work, regular late arrival or early departure from work, conviction of most criminal offences, behaviour that is aggressive or abusive, drunkenness and other anti-social behaviour that affects the business or clients of the business or other employees.
Failure to carry out the work to an adequate standard which may be caused by lack of skill, inadequate training, failure to follow instructions, refusal of further education, lack of knowledge or incompetence.
A situation in which the job, which was previously carried out lawfully becomes illegal which may include breach of a statutory duty.
Any other substantial reason not already covered in the legislation or case law. The Employment Tribunal has discretion to determine these matters especially new issues that may not have previously been encountered.
Redundancy where either the job no longer exists or where there is less demand for particular skills.
Employment termination may be by way of redundancy if an employer no longer needs someone to carry out a particular type of work, and employees with more than two years continuous service are entitled to redundancy pay. If the redundancy is a sham then there may be a case for an unfair dismissal compensation claim.
When a business, company or corporation has to close down or an individual’s skill set has become obsolete due to a change in business plans or an upgrade in technology shifts a business’s focus, management may have the task of dismissing one or more employees which is known as redundancy and is legal. A worker who has been employed for a continuous period of two years or more and is selected for redundancy is entitled to a redundancy payment. When management’s claim of redundancy is judged to be false and used as a cover for inappropriate termination of employment, the dismissed worker might have a claim for compensation for unfair dismissal before the Employment Tribunal. Compensation for unfair dismissal is often substantially higher than the appropriate redundancy payment.
Employers must always apply reasonable and fair procedures for termination of employment. Conscientious employers provide even substandard workers with notice of their inappropriate or deficient behaviour and a reasonable time frame to correct that deficiency. If the deficiencies are not corrected, management must examine the incidents or performance carefully prior to dismissal. Employers who fail to perform these reasonable methods might be looking at an unfair dismissal solicitors compensation claim in the Employment Tribunal.
There is very little time available for unfair dismissal solicitors to settle an employment compensation claim. Claims that cannot be settled by agreement must be subject to an application to the Employment Tribunal which may award compensation or may order reinstatement or both. An application must be made to the Employment Tribunal within three months of the formal dismissal, leaving very little time for a dismissed employee or the solicitor representing them to negotiate a final settlement. Most viable claims therefore result in an application being made by an unfair dismissal solicitor to the Employment Tribunal simply because there is not enough time available to properly investigate and negotiate a settlement. Failure to abide by the time limits may mean that the opportunity to claim compensation is lost forever. Time is of the essence and you should not delay contacting an unfair dismissal solicitor as soon as you possible can, once you are notified about the termination of your employment.
Our unfair dismissal solicitors deal with compensation claims heard by the Employment Tribunal. If you would like legal advice without further obligation from an experienced employment solicitor just call the helpline or complete the contact form or email our offices.HELPLINE: ☎ 0330 660 7122